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Title: Biopolymer elasticity: Mechanics and thermal fluctuations
Authors: Sinha, Supurna
Samuel, J.
Issue Date: Apr-2012
Publisher: American Physical Society
Citation: Physical Review E, 2012, Vol.85, p041802
Abstract: We present an analytical study of the role of thermal fluctuations in shaping molecular elastic properties of semiflexible polymers. Our study interpolates between mechanics and statistical mechanics in a controlled way and shows how thermal fluctuations modify the elastic properties of biopolymers. We present a study of the minimum-energy configurations with explicit expressions for their energy and writhe and plots of the extension versus link for these configurations and a study of fluctuations around the local minima of energy and approximate analytical formulas for the free energy of stretched twisted polymers. The central result of our study is a closed-form expression for the leading thermal fluctuation correction to the free energy around the nonperturbative writhing family solution for the configuration of a biopolymer. From the derived formulas, the predictions of the wormlike chain model for molecular elasticity can be worked out for a comparison against numerical simulations and experiments.
Description: Open Access
ISSN: 1539-3755
1550-2376 (Online)
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Copyright: 2012 The American Physical Society
Appears in Collections:Research Papers (TP)

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